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Bletchley Park veteran slams NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden as 'utterly appalling'

Thinks leaking government secrets wasn't serving our interests
Mon Jun 30 2014, 13:56

BLETCHLEY PARK: CODE BREAKING veteran Betty Webb, who deciphered secret code for the government at Bletchley Park during World War II, today called Edward Snowdon's whistleblowing "utterly appalling".

Speaking in an interview at the Bletchley Park code breaking institution today for the first media opening of the grounds since its restoration that was completed earlier this month, Webb slammed Edward Snowdon's leaks of top secret information from the US National Security Agency (NSA).

Betty Webb at Bletchley Park

"Utterly appalling," she said when asked about the behaviour of the former systems administrator for the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA). "I don't know a great deal of detail about the technical side of things but I think it was appalling and I can't understand how anyone could go do such a thing."

When asked whose interests she thought he served in doing so, she replied, "Well certainly not ours."

Webb said that people like Snowdon, who work for intelligence agencies and are likely to leak sensitive information, need to be educated and should "be taught a better way of doing things". She added, "They ought to be guided."

Webb worked for Bletchley Park during World War II as a code breaker in the Intelligence Office working out cover stories to conceal the fact that Enigma ciphers were being broken. The reports she constructed had to look as though the intelligence in them had been gathered in some other way.

At that time, Webb didn't even know what kind of work exactly she was conducting. It wasn't, until later in life when she discovered the kind of work that she was doing, helping her country defeat enemies in the war.

Bletchley Park announced in October last year that it had signed a five-year deal with security firm McAfee to provide cyber security workshops for kids so they can be safer online.

The workshops will be part of an "International Cyber Security Exhibition" and computer learning zone provided along with a security education officer, which will all be sponsored by McAfee to help teach kids about the dangers of cyber threats.

The deal was part of an ongoing restoration at Bletchley Park, which was completed earlier this month. Today was the first day the media were invited on the grounds to take a look around. µ


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